Fan communities are getting more and more powerful both on- and offline. Fans, or stans, are raising money for good causes like Black Lives Matter, and sabotaged Trump’s Tulsa rally during the 2020 presidential campaign. Such bottom-up actions can be refreshing on an internet dominated by a number of Big Tech companies. But stans also have a frightening side. In this online dossier we look at how fans organise online. Artist and guest programmer Sjef van Beers introduces stan culture. We did video interviews with a Rihanna, BTS and ex-Miley Cyrus stan. Christina Eugenia Puentes illustrates the workings of a fan. Guus Hoeberechts talks to Oumaima about her life in the BTS community. And Lilian Stolk interviews David Turner on how stans influence the music industry.
The Hmm is an inclusive platform for internet cultures. Through events, online editorials, expert advice, and educational programs, we reflect on people’s online behavior, the latest internet trends, the mechanisms behind Big Tech companies and their impact on society.